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Recycling Programs

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The MCMUA plans and implements the recycling programs of Morris County. Much of the recycling that occurs in Morris County is performed by individuals with the help of their municipality, recycling collectors and recycling markets. Additionally, the MCMUA is here to provide services and help when needed.

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Recycling News Via Twitter


2011 Recycling rate graph image of Morris County recycling graph 2006-2011
 

Recycling Works in Morris Co.

Morris County's recycling efforts are having positive results. Figures calculated by NJDEP for 2011 show Morris County having New Jersey's 3rd highest recycling rate out of the state's 21 counties. Additionally, Morris County's recycling rate is the best in northern New Jersey and is significantly higher than most of our surrounding counties.

Morris County's 2011 recycling rate of 47.2% is quickly approaching the 50% recycling goal for municipal solid waste. The good news is that this high recycling rate for 2011 was achieved at the onset of 2011s wide-spread adoption of single-stream recycling in Morris County and as such, we should expect even higher recycling rates in the future. Keep up the good work Morris County!

Documents to Download

Most of these documents will be PDF files.


Recycling Information for the Resident

Q. How do recyclables get collected in Morris County?

  • Each town in Morris County is responsible for its own recycling collection system, and the level of service provided by each town varies. Many, but not all, towns also provide municipal recycling depots that allow for residential drop-off of recyclables. Click here to view the MCMUA's municipal database of municipal solid waste services provided in Morris County. Click here for a listing of municipal recycling depots. There are three primary types of recycling collection in Morris County.
     
    1. Some towns use their own municipal employees and equipment to collect recyclables;
    2. Some towns contract with hauling companies to collect their recyclables. The MCMUA provides recycling collection services for towns that contract to use the MCMUA curbside recycling collection program; and
    3. Some towns don't provide any recycling collection at all and instead rely on each resident to subscribe and pay individually for recycling collection services with a hauling company that services the town.
       
  • Regarding apartments and condominiums, some towns provide for the collection of recyclables at the multi-family complexes while others do not. You should check with the manager of the complex to determine how your recyclables are collected. Click here for additional information about recycling at multi-family residential complexes (apartments and condominiums).
  • The company collecting recyclables is sometimes not the same as the entity collecting garbage. For instance, in some towns the MCMUA collects recyclables but does not collect garbage.
  • Regardless of who picks up the recyclables in each town, there is a list of materials that are mandated to be separated from the garbage in order to be recycled. This is known as mandated source separation recycling and it has been the the law throughout all of New Jersey since 1987. While each town is free to devise how to provide recycling collection services, it is the responsibility of each and every resident, business and governmental institution in Morris County to source separate and recycle all of the mandated materials. Click here to read about the list of mandated recyclables. It is not necessary that a town provide collection for each mandated recyclable, and many towns leave certain materials to be recycled independently by the generator.
     

Q. In which towns does the MCMUA collect recyclables?

  • Click here to view the list of municipalities the MCMUA collects from along with their recycling schedules. The MCMUA curbside recycling collection program operates in towns that contract with the MCMUA to perform this service. Typically when a town contracts with the MCMUA to provide residential curbside recycling collection, the MCMUA also delivers recyclables collected at the municipal recycling depot to recycling markets. Depending upon the contract, sometimes apartments and/or condominiums are included in the collection contract and sometimes they are not. Please check with your municipal recycling coordinator or manager of your apartment/condominium to find out who collects both your recyclables and/or garbage. Additionally, the MCMUA's recycling collection contracts with towns sometimes include collection at municipal buildings and/or schools.
     

Q. Does the MCMUA provide household containers for recycling?

The MCMUA does not provide recycling containers. The MCMUA does provide recycling and trash decals for your own containers. Click here to view the decals that the MCMUA provides.

Q. Should I buy the biggest recycling container available, or is there a weight limit?

The MCMUA currently collects recyclables manually, which dictates a 50-pound limit on the the weight of each individual recycling container and its contents. Please use multiple containers if you have over 50 pounds of recyclables to place at the curb for collection by the MCMUA.

Q. Should I recycle pizza cartons?

A. In most recycling programs, including the MCMUA's single-stream collection program, pizza boxes are acceptable if they are clean and without grease. From our experience, most pizza box tops will be recyclable. The bottom of the pizza box from a plain pizza pie that was delivered with wax paper between the pizza and box is likely to also be clean enough to be acceptable. A pepperoni pizza is likely to have greased up the bottom too much and would make the bottom of the pizza box non-recyclable. The wax paper from the pizza box is not acceptable for recycling and should be placed in the garbage. We wish it was an easy "Yes/No" answer, but it really depends on how much grease gets absorbed in the box and whether someone is willing to tear off the top from the bottom when the bottom is dirty but the top is clean.

Q. Are there other materials I am required to recycle besides what is picked up at curbside?

While most residents recycle cans and bottles and most types of paper through their curbside recycling program, there are other less traditional items mandated to be recycled, even though they may not be acceptable in the town's curbside recycling collection program. Tires and appliances are common examples of such mandated recyclables.

Q. Do I need to label my containers for collection?

Residents should label their home garbage and recycling containers. Many people say they know what container is what and they don't need a decal, but the decals are not only for their use but for the curbside collection crew. Some towns have recycling and garbage collection on the same day. Click here to view the decals that are provided by the MCMUA.

Q. Any holiday recycling tips?

Image of holiday recycling scene

Most gift wrap paper is recyclable and one must not forget about all the corrugated and bottles that are produced during the holidays. Special attention must also be paid to recycling electronics and batteries Click here to view some of the MCMUA's tips on holiday recycling.


Recycling for Businesses

  • Recycling Mandates and Laws - Source separation recycling for designated materials is mandated by law for all businesses and institutions in Morris County.
  • The MCMUA may be able to provide recycling collection service for businesses located along its residential collection routes. The MCMUA also provides recycling collection in select business districts such as in Morristown and Denville. We are excited to offer single-stream recycling collection, which makes compliance with source separation mandates comprehensive and easy. Contact us to see how we can help improve your business recycling program.
  • While construction and demolition debris (waste type 13C) is not mandated to be recycled in Morris County and can be disposed of at the MCMUA transfer stations, much of it is potentially recyclable and many recycling facilities accept and recycle it. To be compliant with Morris County waste flow control requirements, these recyclable materials must be separated from other garbage on site prior to being transported to a recycling facility. In addition, the remaining garbage must be disposed of at the MCMUA transfer stations. The MCMUA has not entered into any agreements with any materials recovery facilities allowing them to assume responsibility for these waste generator's obligation of separating recyclables from garbage. Sending mixed recyclables and garbage to a processing facility to have recyclables separated from the garbage for you is likely to violate laws and regulations related to source separation recycling and waste flow control mandates. Please recycle properly to avoid being non-compliant.
  • While a great deal of construction material is packed in corrugated cardboard, corrugated cardboard is mandated to be source separated and recycled in Morris County and cannot be mixed with construction and demolition debris being disposed of.
  • It usually does not make sense to only have one dumpster at a construction/demolition site since it will be necessary to put certain materials into the garbage and recycle others. Mandated recyclables cannot be mixed with garbage for disposal.
  • Recycling Activities and Notification of Exemption form New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) Permitting - The NJDEP has established an exemption notification system that allows limited business recycling activities to occur without requiring the business to obtain an NJDEP permit or general approval. As long as the recycling activity of the business stays within the limitations of the exemption, which includes compliance with all other laws and regulations, the recycling activity is allowed to occur. Many of these recycling activities impact landscapers and contractors and the management of job debris. Click here for more information about recycling facility exemptions.
     

Recycling and Governmental Institutions

Q. Are shared services available with the MCMUA's single-stream recycling program?

A. The MCMUA procured its single-stream recycling contract with municipal shared services in mind. Municipalities can easily execute inter-local governmental shared services agreements with the MCMUA to enjoy the single-stream recycling services and marketing terms competitively procured by the MCMUA. Towns do not have to be MCMUA curbside collection customers to enter into such agreements. Please contact the MCMUA for more information about this opportunity. There is no longer any need to wait to bring the benefits of single-stream recycling to your municipality.